Who knew cooking a small bird could induce such anxiety? Making my first roast chicken was a little nerve racking and I spent large chunks of last Sunday with my face pressed up against the oven window, but it turned out great and I learned a few things worth sharing.
1. Roasting at 420 degrees for the first 20 minutes makes a nice brown skin
2. All ovens are different, but a 3.5 pound chicken should cook in 45-60 minutes
3.The chicken is done when the skin around the legs becomes taunt and the juices run clear from the cavity. This was crucial to me because my biggest fear was a dry bird.
Living in a Latin neighborhood, I drew inspiration from my environment and mixed up a citrusy marinade made with orange juice, orange zest, lemon juice, lemon zest, honey and Adobo. I threw a couple of garlic cloves in the cavity and a half lemon. Then I sprinkled the skin with too little adobo after I gave it an olive oil rubdown. The peppers I put in the bottom of the pan were too soft and drowned in chicken juice by the time the roasting process was over which leads me to believe that I should double the amount and add something sturdier like potatoes next time.
Give the sauté pans a rest and let the roasting paralysis go because it’s really not the hard.